(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Children's Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "Poland Russia and Great Britain 1941-1945"

decimated, was still living until the Russians had replaced the Germans
in 19443 would no longer exist.
When the Red Army began their advance into Poland, the Polish people,
realising their ultimate destiny, called on their Allies, Britain and the
United States, for help. But America had decided to limit its interest in
Emope to a  wait and-see 5 attitude. Britain continued her Euiopean
policy alone, and since the Polish people could no longer keep step with
this policy, which entailed not only the sacrifice of their country but the
death of their nation, a coolness between the British Government and
Poland was bound to arise.
Not only Poland, but all the people of the Middle Zone, were turning
to America and Britain as the strongest representatives of Western
civilisation for the help they so sorely needed. It was a tragic situtation.
The sympathy of the American and British people went out to the Poles
as they were handed over to the slaughter, for the consent of Britain and
America, given at Teheran, could no longer be concealed. Even the
British Press was now openly writing thai, as regards Poland, " they
agreed that she should receive compensation in the West and Noith for
the territories lost to her in the East/3'"
The Brit'sh Government found itself between the pressure of the
public who determinedly clung on to the ideals and aims with which they
had urged their Government to go to war in 1939, and the expediency of
the circumstances. The British policy became one of ' shilly-shally.*
London alternatively bargained, requested, even begged Moscow, and5
despite rebuffs and kicks returned again and again to the question, en-
deavouring to find a compromise which would permit of delaying the
settlement of the problem of the Middle Zone until the end of the war.
The two champions of the diplomatic game, Britain and Russia, were
trying hard to gain the advantage on that battlefield, but unfortunately
for the Polish people, Moscow had the advantage of being on the spot,
and began ruthlessly and without delay to exploit her victory to the
utmost. When in the summer of 19443 ^e Soviets proclaimed that their
own * Committee' would function in Poland, the Kremlin once
more underlined that this c Government in exile * was synonymous with
England, just as it had done in the summer of 1939 and again in 1941,
and as this Government continued in its refusal to submit to the orders
from Moscow, the latter preferred to talk directly with the British.
London made yet another attempt to save the c Unity of the Allies * and
its standing, by persuading the Polish Government to capitulate, relin-
quish half its territory and agree to the farce of a ' friendly * Government.
But the Kremlin was in no hurry to grant concessions and demanded
plein pouvoir in Poland. It seemed a strange spectacle, this, of a great
Power compelling its weaker Ally to submit to their greater Ally, who was
*  The Times, September 16th, 1944.
305